BBOWT returns to the High Court for judicial review over Ox-Cam Expressway

BBOWT staff challenging the government's process over the Expressway at the Royal Courts of Justice in February, when we were granted a Judicial Review.

In February 2019, the High Court gave permission to the Berks, Bucks and Oxon Wildlife Trust (BBOWT) to proceed with their claim against the government regarding the Oxford to Cambridge Expressway at an oral hearing. On Wednesday 19 and Thursday 20 June BBOWT returns to the High Court for the next stage – a judicial review.
UPDATE: On Thursday 20 June, judgement was reserved on our case, meaning we won't know the verdict immediately. We should hear within the next couple of weeks.

 

We are challenging the government for its failure to assess the environmental impact of its three ‘Growth Corridor’ options for the Expressway and associated housing development. Last autumn, the government expressed a preference for the corridor which BBOWT considers to be the worst of the three options.

The government failed to conduct a Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) or a Habitats Regulation Assessment (HRA), thereby ignoring European law and excluding key stakeholders, including expert ecologists, from the decision-making process.

We need to ensure that the potential impact on wildlife of this concrete corridor is fully assessed and made public.
Matthew Stanton
Head of Planning, Policy and Advocacy at BBOWT

In November 2018, BBOWT issued a claim in the High Court, challenging the government. In January 2019 we were refused permission for a judicial review, but that decision was then overturned in the High Court in February.

Matthew Stanton, Head of Planning, Policy and Advocacy, at Berks, Bucks and Oxon Wildlife Trust, said: ‘The Oxford to Cambridge Expressway could be a disaster for wildlife, and future generations may not forgive us if we fail to speak up. Whatever the outcome of the judicial review hearing we will continue to scrutinise the government’s plans for the expressway, including the scope and content of any future public consultations. We need to ensure that the potential impact on wildlife of this concrete corridor is fully assessed and made public.’

BBOWT is being represented by Leigh Day Solicitors.

We do not know whether a judgement will be made this week or whether it will be made at a later date in writing, but we will update this page as soon as we know the outcome.

Find out more about BBOWT and the Ox-Cam Expressway